Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad

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Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad is a summer favorite. Chilled pasta salad filled to the brim with juicy chicken and Caesar salad flavors. A slam dunk meal! Family and friends unite for the love over this dish, protein, carbs, veggies and cheese (yum!)

White ceramic bowl with Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad and utensils to the side.
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Why Make Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad.

Few things compete with this powerhouse combination. It’s a great BBQ side dish, lighter lunch or dinner or a lip smacking side you will love. Just like my Chicken Macaroni Pasta Salad, this is a classic crown favorite.

  • Easy. Comes together quick once you cook the juicy, addictive chicken.
  • Healthyish. It’s got a lot of nutrient dense ingredients and loads of crisp romaine.
  • Customizable. As always, you can add what you want to this dish.

Ingredient Notes

Ingredients in small bowls on a counter, overhead shot of the items.

All other ingredients and measurements can be found in the recipe card towards the bottom of this post. 

  • Chicken Breasts. Use high quality boneless, skinless breasts for this recipe. Thighs and/or rotisserie chicken will also work!
  • Seasonings. This is important for the chicken and the dressing. Dried dill, basil, salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder.
  • Pasta. Use any shape you desire. I like to do penne, bowtie or Cellentani.
  • Caesar Dressing. I make my own in this recipe (ingredients are in the recipe card below) but you can use store bought dressing as well. Just pick your favorite.
  • Parmesan. For extra flavor.
  • Bread Crumbs. Or croutons! For a little crunch.
  • Romaine Lettuce. This is for color, crunch and the “salad” portion of the dish.

Recipe Variations

  • Make it low carb, cut the pasta in half and skip the croutons.
  • Make it dairy free. Use dairy free alternatives for the Parmesan and the dressing.
  • Add more veggies. You can load up the veggies and add chopped tomatoes, charred corn, avocado or diced peppers.

Steps To Make This Recipe

Steps to make this dish in a skillet and on cutting boards.

Step One. Start the pasta! This takes about 20 minutes, cook according to the package.Once pasta is done, you will want to rinse it with cold water.

Step Two. While the pasta is cooking, season the chicken, slice in half for a quicker cook. Heat a pan to medium/high heat. Add the seasoned chicken to a greased pan and cook for about 8-10 minutes on each side or until the chicken reaches 165º internally.

Step Three. Set the chicken to the side and let it rest. Make the Caesar dressing if using my recipe.

Step Four. Slice the chicken into cubes. Add the cooled pasta, romaine, parmesan, chicken and 3 quarters of the dressing. Toss very well. Add in croutons or bread crumbs and serve. Add more dressing if needed! Enjoy.

White ceramic bowl with Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad and utensils to the side.  Up close photo.

Recipe Pairings

This dish is wonderful on it’s own but I highly recommend a few great dishes to serve with it if you want a bigger meal!

Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad Tips

  • Don’t overcook the chicken! It’s always best to have a digital meat thermometer. This will help keep the chicken nice and juicy.
  • Taste as you go, if you make my homemade dressing, be sure to give it a taste and add more salt or capers if desired.
  • Don’t add the dressing until you are ready to serve! The romaine can get a little soggy if it sits too long with dressing.
  • Make It healthier. You can cut the calories in this dish by skipping the parmesan and the croutons, although they do add a nice touch 😘

Recipe FAQs

Can I make this Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad vegetarian?

Yes, you can skip the chicken and top with tofu if desired.

Can Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad be made ahead of time?

Yes! Just wait to add the dressing and romaine to the bowl until right before serving. The romaine can get soggy if it sits too long.

Other Pasta Salads To Try

If you loved this recipe let me know! Also, follow me on Instagram & Pinterest for even more fun recipes to make you feel good from the inside out. Thanks for being here.

White ceramic bowl with Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad and utensils to the side.
5 from 1 vote

Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad

Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad is a summer favorite. Chilled pasta salad filled to the brim with juicy chicken and Caesar salad flavors.
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 37 minutes
Servings: 6

Equipment

  • small food processor if making the dressing from scratch.
  • large skillet

Ingredients 

For the chicken

  • 1.5 lb chicken breasts, boneless & skinless. Thighs will also work
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp dried dill
  • ½ tsp garlic powder

Caesar Salad

  • 6-8 oz pasta,, cellentani, penne or bowie
  • 2 heads romaine lettuce, sliced , about 6-8 cups
  • ¼ cup parmesan
  • cup croutons, or bread crumbs

Caesar Dressing

  • ¾ cup mayonnaise , more as needed
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp capers and brine
  • 3 Tbsp dijon mustard
  • ½ Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 2-3 Tbsp water , just to thin the dressing to spread easy

Instructions 

  • Start the pasta. This takes about 20 minutes, cook according to the package.Once pasta is done, you will want to rinse it with cold water. 
  • While the pasta is cooking, season the chicken, slice in half for a quicker cook. Heat a pan to medium/high heat. Add the seasoned chicken to a greased pan and cook for about 8-10 minutes on each side or until the chicken reaches 165º internally. 
  • Set the chicken to the side and let it rest. Make the Caesar dressing if using my recipe. 
  • Slice the chicken into cubes. Add the cooled pasta, romaine, parmesan, chicken and 3 quarters of the dressing. Toss very well. Add in croutons or bread crumbs and serve. Add more dressing if needed! Enjoy! 

Notes

  • Don’t overcook the chicken! It’s always best to have a digital meat thermometer. This will help keep the chicken nice and juicy. 
  • Taste as you go, if you make my homemade dressing, be sure to give it a taste and add more salt or capers if desired. 
  • Don’t add the dressing until you are ready to serve! The romaine can get a little soggy if it sits too long with dressing. 
  • Make It healthier. You can cut the calories in this dish by skipping the parmesan and the croutons, although they do add a nice touch 😘
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5 cups | Calories: 394kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 13g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 87mg | Sodium: 908mg | Potassium: 1070mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 18399IU | Vitamin C: 15mg | Calcium: 142mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Author: Bailey
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 37 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6
Calories: 394
Keyword: Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad
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